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June 5, 2018 / Leslie

AudioBooks I Decided to DNF too Quickly?

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.


Books I Decided to DNF too Quickly?

Maybe I gave up on these too soon. I’m usually not quick to DNF a book, especially when it has a lot of positive reviews and is a subject or author I usually enjoy.

Since June is audiobook month, I have selected books I tried to listen to rather than read in print.


Gave up about a quarter of the way through. I had high expectations after reading all the positive reviews but this was going nowhere for me. There were too many narrators, but most of all, there was no story and nothing to ground me. I enjoy biographies and historical works, but this book wasn’t engaging for me.


I really enjoyed Girl on a Train so I was eagerly anticipating the author’s new book. But it wasn’t working for me. Too many changes in point of view! I could not follow the plot. If I can’t multitask while listening, I give up. Is it worth trying this in print?


Got about a third of the way through the audio and just wasn’t getting into the story. Maybe I’m missing something. I may try again when I’m in the mood for fantasy, which is always a hit or miss genre with me.


I listened to the first quarter of this book and gave up. Besides not liking the main character, I don’t like the narration. And that usually does it for me even if the book is good. The voice for Lily the dog is beyond annoying. The dog SHOUTS. OUT. HER. WORDS. And each word has a pause like its own sentence. Awful. Perhaps I would do better reading it rather than listening.


After two attempts and several hours of trying to listen to the audiobook, I could not stay focused on the story. It was difficult to follow the subplots and many characters while listening and after a while I just didn’t care. I doubt I would like it much better in print and perhaps the story just isn’t right for me.


I definitely did not give up on this one too soon but I had to include it as my number one audio fail. I might have been able to slog through the book to see what all the fuss was about, but the audio was so HORRIBLE, I had to stop listening.

The narrator’s voice was very annoying. In trying to sound young all I could hear was a “valley girl” type voice that was grating on my ears. The female voices all sounded the same and the narrator could not do a convincing male voice much less a hot, sexy male. Hearing her “Christian” speak was an immediate turn-off. The dialog itself isn’t very good and the audio version emphasized that enormously. If I had to hear “jeez”, “holy $hit” or how “weird” something was one more time I was going to scream! At almost 20 hours, this is too much for anyone to bear.


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Leave a Comment
  1. Lloyd Russell / Jun 5 2018 9:12 am

    I agree with you about the Backman book. I loved A Man Called Ove. And I was determined to like this one too. I got to page 125 (I only do print) and gave it up.
    I read 50 Shades because, as a blogger, I think we all try to read the latest popular novels. I didn’t read 2 & 3. But I have to say that I liked 50 Shades. It was much better written than I expected it to be.
    As for Lincoln in the Bardo, the minute it became a Pulitzer Prize winner I was done!


    • Leslie / Jun 5 2018 9:31 am

      I really enjoyed Man Called Ove, which was why I was eager to read Grandmother. I think it was the fantasy element that put me off. I did eventually skim through the print version of Fifty Shades. It was still bad, but easier to read than to listen! My bookclub has selected Lincoln for next month. Not sure if I want to try it again.


  2. Saloni / Jun 5 2018 10:06 am

    I can never ever imagine listening to Fifty Shades of Grey. It is one thing to trawl through the book but entirely different to listen to the words and the emotions the author is trying to put through.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. BermudaOnion / Jun 5 2018 10:16 am

    I gave up on Into the Water as well. I just couldn’t figure out what was going on.


  4. I’m struggling with A Man Called Ove at the moment so I can see where My Grandmother Asked Me could be a bit of a struggle especially if it’s a genre out of your usual. I can’t imagine how bad Fifty Shades would be in audio. My daughter had a friend whose mom insisted on listening to the audio in the car when he was around just to embarrass him (he was 17 or 18 at the time). That image always made me laugh and that’s about the most positive thing I can say about that book.


  5. Jane the Raincity Librarian / Jun 5 2018 10:11 pm

    I love podcasts, but I really struggle with audio books, I find it hard to focus on a narrative while multitasking! And an unpleasant narrator can really ruin the entire experience.


  6. liveforbroadway / Jun 6 2018 8:52 pm

    I can only imagine how insufferable the audiobook was for Fifty Shades, then! It sounds like such a pain. Great post. As for the Paula Hawkins book, I think if you couldn’t tolerate the switching of POV in the audiobook you probably won’t do much better with the print version. Follow your gut! If something says the many changes of view aren’t for you, it probably isn’t.


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